CEDAR PARK — For more than 50 minutes, the Oklahoma City Barons played “bend but don’t break” defense on the penalty kill and killed off the Texas Stars’ first seven power plays Wednesday night.
On the eighth power play, Texas finally cashed in and swept the best-of-five first-round series with a 4-2 victory in Game 3.
Justin Dowling scored the winning goal on a 5-on-3 power play with 8 minutes, 39 seconds remaining. Dowling had the puck below the left face-off circle, faked a pass and beat Richard Bachman on a sharp angle shot.
Scott Glennie scored an empty-net goal with 61 seconds remaining, giving Texas some late insurance as it advanced to the second round. Texas’ second-round opponent won’t be known until later this week after the completion of the other first-round series.
Brendan Ranford gave Texas a 1-0 lead 7:16 into the game on an assist by Travis Morin, his fourth point of the playoffs.
Texas caught Oklahoma City on a bad line change before Ranford’s goal.
The Barons made a late change to get the checking line of Ben Eager, Will Acton, and Ryan Hamilton on the ice against Texas’ top line. With the extra time and space, Morin carried the puck down the right side of the offensive zone and fired a hard pass to Ranford, who easily scored.